immortal wishes:
labor and transcendence
on a Japanese sacred mountain

Ellen Schattschneider

Duke University Press (2003)


Akakura Mountain Shrine Rituals

The Great Summer Festival (Taisai)

Many worshippers attending the morning ceremony make offerings of pure foodstuffs or rice wine (as well as substantial financial donations). Each offering is registered by shrine staff members, and wrapped in papers on which is written, in careful calligraphy, the names of those making the offerings. Shrine members then place the offerings to the right of the Honden (behind the Shinden). Some offerings are retrieved afterwards by worshippers to be consumed at "gofu" (purified substance); other offerings are redistributed by shrine officials.

In the center background are visible gold brocaded oshirasama figurines.

Website developed by Ellen Schattschneider (Brandeis University)